Doing your expenses can feel like a huge chunk of admin time as a business owner. The paper, the data entry, the details: it often swallows up whole days.
Expenses are the core of your business’s bookkeeping as they form most of your accounts records and what you use in your tax return. It doesn’t matter if you do your own tax return, have an accountant or have an accountant and a bookkeeper, the responsibility for getting those records remains yours.
It’s important to get it right and also not feel like it’s taking over your life. A massive time sink isn’t good for anyone.
Fear not, these 3 tech tools will make it easy and save you time. You don’t even need to be that tech-savvy to use them, just a little bit of working out a system that works for your life and business.
1. Use The Cloud
Keep your records and a backup in the cloud. It’s easy to set up and integrate with other tools (such as phone apps). A lot of the work can be done and backed up automatically once you’ve spent 15 minutes or so setting up the system. The most time is usually spent creating your user account! Try Google Drive or Wave for your bookkeeping, Dropbox for one of your back ups and IFTTT for automating systems.
2. Use Your Phone
Your smartphone can be put to really good use. You can use a scanning app or your phone’s camera for receipts and records such as bank statements, and set it so they are backed up automatically. There are many expenses, accounting, receipt and money apps available, so have a quick search in the app store and try a few out. If you use accounting software, search for related apps and integrations to make your life easy.
The system I use is to write on each receipt what it’s for and take a photo using my phone’s camera; the camera automatically uploads to Dropbox. Dropbox is automatically available on my computer and is automatically backed up to Drive and a local hard disk.
3. Use Your Email
Create a folder for all email relating to your accounts, e.g. receipts, transactions, statements, refunds, calendar notifications. Have one folder for each tax year. If you have more than a few emails in the folder it may save you time to have a folder for each month. Keep at least two backups which can be automated. It saves a lot of time doing admin when your records are all in one place.
Which tech tools do you use to save time doing your expenses?
Next month: 5 Ways To Make The Money In Your Business Work For You